Sunday 10 July 2011

Energy Accounting - Offshoring

In today's Sunday newspapers there are reports that electricity bills in the UK will rise by 30% over the next year owing to the additional costs for renewable energy and nuclear energy disposal costs. It makes sense that we boost our national contribution to green energy.

However when a UK based/located supplier outsources its opperations to an offshore location they are ignoring their contribution to the carbon load on the environment unless the offshore location imposes similar green taxes on supplied energy. For example offshoring a call centre or a datacentre will still generate the same same carbon load but in a different part of the world. The exception would of course be if the overseas location uses renewable low carbon energy.

Where jobs and operations are outsourced to offshore locations there should be a component of green energy taxation paid/rebated for the energy that the people/facilities will be using. If this taxation does not happen our country could be giving an unfair advantage to the overseas suppliers of people services or data centre who may not pay any carbon tax. I'm not proposing double taxation, merely a level playing field for UK based providers. It will also provide an incentive for suppliers bother here and overseas to become more carbon efficient.

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